10 Ways to Ruin a Job Interview


Be Rude

Being a jerk doesn't help your chances of landing a job. Not only shouldn't you be rude to your interviewer, but be nice to the receptionist [source: Green]. Yet, rudeness is a two-way street. Here's another story from my "How to Blow a Job Interview" file.

I had set up an interview with the owner of the company through a head-hunter named Sandy. I arrived at the interview about a half hour early, per rule No. 1. I waited, and waited and waited some more. The receptionist was the only person to greet me. Thirty minutes or so later, the owner came out, looking as if she had just survived an explosion at Talbots. I was a bit steamed at this point. We sat down and she told me that I wasn't on her schedule.

"Sandy called me last Monday and set up our appointment for today," I explained in my oh-so-nice voice. "And then she confirmed it yesterday. She wanted to get it done before she left for Italy."

"She never told me," Talbots said curtly.

"Well, Sandy set it up, and here I am," I said, with an annoyed chuckle.

"I wasn't expecting you," Talbots barked as she fidgeted in her chair. Talbots wanted out. So did I. Any thought of getting the job evaporated from my consciousness.

"And that's my problem, how?"

The next 10 minutes, I hope, were as painful for her as they were for me. Talbots didn't respect me as a potential employee, so there was zero chance I was going to respect her. Although I probably could have been more professional and pleasant (naw!), so could she.

Still, this story withstanding, try not to be rude.